Want to discuss MNF game? Not here

November, 20, 2013
11/20/13
4:46
PM ET
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Carolina Panthers wide receiver Brandon LaFell stopped the line of questioning before it began when it turned to Monday night's 24-20 victory against the New England Patriots.

"I wish I could talk about Monday night," LaFell said on Wednesday. "The coach just told us we can't talk about the game no more."

That would be coach Ron Rivera, who is working harder than ever to make sure the focus remains on what the Panthers have directly in front of them and not what already has happened.

Or what will happen in another month if Carolina reaches the playoffs.

Whether it's how well LaFell and the receivers played or what players thought about the controversial no-call on the final play, Rivera doesn't want them discussing it.

"No," he said. "It's over. ... If you lose focus of what's the next biggest game, and you go out and screw it up and lose, what you did those previous weeks no longer matters. We have to enjoy it for the amount of time we're allowed, and when we come in to start focusing on Miami, now it's time.

"Now everything we talk about, everything we want to do, is all about Miami. We don't want to get ahead of ourselves and we don't want to look back."

You can't blame Rivera. Carolina has won six straight and seven of its last eight games with that philosophy. No need to change.

As Rivera sees it, any time spent on the New England game is time that could be spent on the Dolphins.

"That's the way it is,'' Rivera said. "If they look at it any other way, and that's the reason why, then I didn't do a good enough job. So I'm not going to allow it.

"When we were in that team meeting room I told them, 'Get past it. People want to talk about what happened Monday night, it ain't going to change. Talk all you want, it's not going to change.'"

David Newton | email

ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter

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